UQ’s leap to 77 from 85 is the strongest improvement of any of the four Australian universities in the top 100, and comes on the back of UQ’s top 50 placings in other global rankings. It is UQ’s best result since the annual ranking began in 2003.
Vice-Chancellor and President Professor Peter Høj said the dramatic improvement reflected the dedication to excellence of UQ staff and alumni.
“This is an independent, objective testament to UQ’s outstanding quality,” Professor Høj said.
“It bears out the distinctive excellence of our staff and global alumni, particularly those published in Nature and Science.
“This is an exceptionally good result for UQ and for Australia, especially in light of the vigorous competition from universities in countries such as China that benefit from massive and strategic investments in higher education and research.
“Australia must not drop its guard. Without proper resourcing of Australian university teaching and research, Asian students will find education closer to home more attractive, and Australia’s $18 billion education export industry will diminish.”
Professor Hoj said rankings systems such as ARWU were vitally important in attracting international students, who often factored in global standing when choosing a university.
The Center for World-Class Universities at Shanghai Jiao Tong University has published the ARWU annually since 2003, using objective indicators including
- number of alumni and staff winning Nobel Prizes and Fields medals
- number of highly cited researchers selected by Thomson Scientific
- number of articles published in journals of Nature and Science
- number of articles indexed in Science Citation Index – Expanded and Social Sciences Citation Index
- per capita performance with respect to the size of an institution.
“Students immersed in a research-inspired culture value the application of excellence to solve problems, and have greater confidence to tackle complex and unexpected challenges,” he said.